No Such Thing As An Opinion!

June 17, 2011

Say what? How many US students did you say have an A average?

Here is one of the more shocking and unbelievable things I've ever read (Note: it was posted on MSNBC, so I suppose I shouldn't be that surprised!)  A newly released study found:

" 1966, only 19 percent of college students who were surveyed earned an "A" or "A-minus" average in high school, compared with 48 percent in 2009."

48% of American high school students recently earned (er, received) an A or A- average?

There is no way in hell that 48% of those students deserved those grades, for many reasons!

1) Numerous pieces of evidence consistently show that American academic performance has been decreasing substantially over the years.  This would imply that the percentage of students who earned A or A- grades in the past would have been much greater than 48% of students!  But that is not the case.  As the article states, only 19% of those in 1966 earned those grades!

2) It's extremely unlikely, if not nearly impossible, for a legitimate (meaning if the exams were a good measure of ability and marked accurately) bell curve distribution to produce half of the students earning the top grades!  If 48% receive an A or A- average, this implies that the overall student average is approximately B+.  A regular distribution should have a C average!

3) Perhaps most indicative of the invalidity of the figure is this: There is no way in hell that the percentage of top students would increase from 19% to 48% over the same period of time that the best measures of academic ability show the
reverse pattern to be occurring!  For example, SAT scores have trended downward significantly since the mid 1960s!

In addition, it defies common sense that academic ability would have risen so much during a period of time when immigration from lower IQ countries increased rapidly!  Since the immigration floodgates were opened in the 1960s, immigrants started flooding into the USA from countries where the people score lower on tests of capability (relative to Americans
' scores).

As a result of this influx of immigrants (and their subsequent children), a greater proportion of Americans now score lower in capability.  As a result, the American student body has...well, to put it simply...become much less capable!

So what accounts for 48% of the students receiving an A or A- average?  It can only be two things:  Either they've made the questions much easier than they have been in the past, or they're assigning grades that are higher than they've actually earned!

Foreign colleges should think twice about admitting Americans based on their grades!

I wonder if American
colleges are engaging in the same practice that the high schools are?

Followup note:

Soon after I wrote this article, a teacher cheating scandal made the news!  In turns out that my prediction was correct!

Read my July 7, 2011 article for details!

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